Youdont have to have Dumbo ears to hear all the negativity out there about theWarriors acquiring center Kwame Brown.Therearent many people out there saying nice move.Im noteither. I just cant understand the anger and utter denouncement by a largenumber of fans. Im not here to say the Warriors just pulled off somethingspecial in acquiring Brown, the No. 1 pick in the 2001 draft.Not at all.Im just saying it might have been the Warriors most logical and practicalmove since free agency started. Why? Because Brown was within the Warriorsfinancial means, they targeted him albeit late and in a hurry and then theyoffered him an amount of money they knew hed take.Thats thefirst time this offseason the Warriors did that whether were talking abouttrying to sign a free agent or trying to make a trade.TheWarriors had been tap-dancing around the edges before that. They wanted to havetheir cake a big-time acquisition and eat it, too not having to give uptoo much, whether it be money or talent.What theWarriors have found out is that they have to do a little more to get players.If the Warriors wanted Tyson Chandler, it would have taken upwards of 70million, instead of the 60-million-ish they offered; if they really wanted theClippers not to match on DeAndre Jordan, they would have signed him to an offersheet worth more than 50 million and not just 43 million.If theWarriors really wanted Chris Paul traded to those same Clippers on Wednesday they would have agreed to put the untouchable Stephen Curry into the package.The reality of the situation is the Warriors could have acquired any one ofthose three players but didnt want it bad enough.In otherwords, it took more risk and more boldness for the Warriors to acquire one ofthose three players than they were willing to take on.And now wecome back to Brown and the real reason fans are P.O.d about his acquisition.It has nothing to do with Brown. If theres anyone out there still saying Brownis a bust because he was the top pick in 2001 and he never lived up to it, hitthe pike.Thats irrelevant now. That was 10 years ago, Brown is now 29 years old and noperson in his right mind thinks Brown can achieve greatness anymore. And neitherdo the Warriors. But they have Andris Biedrins as their starting center andthat should be enough said.They neededanother big man, plain and simple. And he was the next person on the list, soto speak.The realreason fans are mad about Brown is because theyre mad at owner Joe Lacob, whoset expectations too high by promising big and bold things. And Brown isnt abig and bold thing. Hes not Chandler or Jordan or Paul, either.Warriorsfans are upset because while they were told Big Things are Coming, the onlything that came was a backup center. And meanwhile, the L.A. Clippers of allteams, are now sitting with Chauncey Billups, Chris Paul and Jordan. And dontforget, they already had Blake Griffin.On manylevels, Brown makes sense for the Warriors. Hes an above average interiordefender and a good rebounder, which makes him a nice fit for theWarriors.He willalso provide support for Biedrins, who has been unreliable the past twoseasons.But hesnot the impact player the Warriors had been promising, not the gutsy, big-timemove that theres been too much talk of. Nope. Brown isnt any of those things.Hes just a nice little pickup.Right now,thats not enough for Warriors fans.
OAKLAND -- Once upon a time, for a few fleeting seasons, there was a rivalry between the Warriors and the Clippers. These days, however, it’s more like an exhibition of domination.
The Warriors will be trying to sweep LA for the second consecutive season when the teams meet Thursday night at Oracle Arena.
While the Warriors (47-9) open the post-All-Star break trying to solidify their status as the No. 1 overall seed, the Clippers (35-21) are scrambling to hang onto the No. 4 seed in the Western Conference. LA has won its last four games, but is 6-7 since Chris Paul went down with a thumb injury on Jan. 18.
Paul was originally expected to miss at least six weeks and still is listed as out. He has, however, received medical clearance and Clippers coach Doc Rivers on Thursday morning left open the possibility of Paul’s return.
Warriors by 13
MATCHUP TO WATCH
Draymond Green vs. Blake Griffin: The rise of the Warriors can be traced back to Green’s stifling of Griffin in the first round of the 2014 playoffs. It’s a classic battle between a defensive ace and a spectacular offensive star. With Paul expected to miss his 14th consecutive game, it’s up to Griffin to make plays while also carrying the bulk of the scoring load. In three games against the Warriors this season, he is averaging 21.0 points on 45.3-percent (24-of-53) shooting.
Warriors: C Zaza Pachulia (R rotator cuff strain) and C David West (L thumb fracture) are listed as questionable.
Clippers: F Brice Johnson (herniated disk) and G Chris Paul (L thumb ligament tear) are listed as out.
Warriors: 8-2. Clippers: 5-5.
The Warriors have won the last nine regular-season meetings and 17 of the last 22. They have won 10 in a row in Oakland and 20 of the last 22.
THREE THINGS TO WATCH
POST-BREAK BLUES: The first game after the break is treacherous for most teams, and the Warriors are no exception. Coming off the break last season, they went to Portland and lost by 32 -- still their most lopsided loss since Steve Kerr arrived before the 2014-15 season. Early intensity may be hard to muster, but it’s necessary.
PARK ON THE ARC: The Clippers are a team of launchers, relying largely on jumpers from the perimeter, often 3-point distance, where they rank fourth in field-goal percentage. They rank 27th in points in the paint and 24th in second-chance points, so the Warriors would be wise to force contested jump shots, no matter who is taking them.
BALL VALUE: The Warriors over the last five games are averaging a very manageable 10.8 turnovers. If they continue this trend, it pretty much closes off any avenue for the Clippers to crank up their offense.
OAKLAND -- The Warriors, as expected, mostly observed from the sideline as the NBA trade deadline came and went on Thursday.
That does not mean they were inactive.
While other teams shopped around with an eye on matching up with them, the Warriors, according to multiple sources, were constantly studying the market -- and will continue to do so with the knowledge that a number of veteran players will be bought out and, therefore, become available on the cheap.
Ex-Warriors center Andrew Bogut, for example, likely will be on the market after the 76ers acquired him in a trade with the Mavericks. But because the Warriors traded Bogut within the last 12 months, they are not eligible to re-sign him, even if they were so inclined, which they are not.
Any move the Warriors make in the coming weeks likely will bring in a wing to play behind the likes of Kevin Durant, Andre Iguodala and Klay Thompson. They place a high value on such players largely because they tend to be relatively seamless fits into their defensive concepts.